Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2012
Hospital Practice News
Use code of conduct draft in medical staff bylaws
The AMA has revised its model code of conduct to reflect recent changes to standards issued by the Joint Commission. This model code of conduct, developed for insertion in medical staff bylaws, aims to assist medical staffs with implementation of a code of conduct in accordance with AMA policy and consistent with the Joint Commission Leadership Standard.
New solutions lower risk of colorectal SSIs
A project to reduce colorectal surgical site infections (SSI) saved more than $3.7 million in costs for 135 avoided SSIs, according to the Joint Commission. The two-and-a-half year project included seven hospitals and was directed by the Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare in collaboration with the American College of Surgeons.
The participating hospitals were able to reduce superficial incisional SSIs, which affect skin and underlying tissue, by 45 percent and all types of colorectal SSIs by 32 percent, the Joint Commission reports. The average length of stay for hospital patients with any type of colorectal SSI decreased from an average of 15 days to 13 days. In comparison, patients with no SSIs had an average length of stay of eight days.
Read more on the Joint Commission website.
Principles established to help physician employees
A new set of principles from the AMA aims to help physicians, those who employ physicians and their respective advisors identify and address some of the unique challenges employment presents to professionalism and the practice of medicine.
The AMA House of Delegates adopted the principles in November during its Interim Meeting.
"The principles for physician employment provide a broad framework to help guide physicians and their employers as they collaborate to provide safe, high-quality and cost-effective patient care," AMA Board of Trustees member Joseph P. Annis, MD, said. "The guidelines reinforce that patients' welfare must take priority in any situation where the interests of physicians and employers conflict."
The AMA also offers a variety of resources to meet the needs of employed physicians, a growing segment of the profession.
New model agreements help with service line contracts
With service line agreements becoming both more popular and more complex, the AMA has introduced a new resource to assist physicians and their legal counsel in navigating and negotiating these contracts.
Model conflict management process now available
Joint Commission accreditation standards require the development of a conflict management process to settle disputes between the organized medical staff and the governing body. With that, the AMA offers a model conflict management process that provides guidance for the development of such a process, as well as a process for resolving disputes between the medical executive committee and other members of the medical staff.
OMSS meeting summary now available to download
A summary of the 2012 AMA Organized Medical Staff Section (OMSS) Interim Meeting and a related PowerPoint presentation are now available for download. OMSS representatives are encouraged to use these materials to share information about the Nov. 8-10 meeting with the members of their medical staffs and with hospital leadership.
The OMSS Assembly considered 13 items of business on a range of issues and sent six resolutions to the AMA House of Delegates for consideration at the 2012 Interim Meeting. Refer to the OMSS Interim Meeting Proceedings for a complete recap of actions taken on all OMSS items of business and on select items of business considered by the House.
For more information on the most recent meeting visit the OMSS Interim Meeting Web page.
Save the date for the OMSS 2013 Annual Meeting, June 13-15 at the Hyatt Regency Chicago. Registration for the meeting will be available in early 2013.
Employed physicians: Look to the AMA for advice
AMA member physicians in contractual relationships with hospitals, health systems and other similar entities can receive personal assistance from the AMA. While the AMA cannot provide legal opinions or representation, it is dedicated to answering questions and providing advice on such topics as contracting, credentialing, peer review, due process and medical staff governance.
AMA members may take advantage of this valuable resource in either of two ways:
- Complete a brief online form, and an AMA expert on physician-hospital/health system relations will contact you to discuss your questions or concerns.
- Contact AMA Member Relations via email or at (800) 262-3211 to arrange a time to discuss your questions or concerns with an AMA expert on physician-hospital/health system relations.
This offer is a benefit of AMA membership. If you're not a member, join today.
Manual helps doctors with employment agreements
With more and more established physicians, as well as those completing training, becoming employees of hospitals, medical groups or affiliate organizations, it's important that they enhance their understanding and negotiating position as they navigate employment contracts and opportunities in these practice settings.
A manual from the AMA, the "Annotated Model Physician-Hospital Employment Agreement," can help. This resource addresses the specific needs of established physicians and those completing training who are preparing to negotiate an employment contract with a hospital or related entity.
In addition, the AMA offers webcasts covering employment-related topics. Two webcasts developed by the AMA Organized Medical Staff Section cover physician employment agreements and employment contracting and are available for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™.
Meantime, webcasts covering negotiating contracts—"Contracting 101: You Get What You Negotiate" and "Negotiate with Confidence: Know What's in Your Contract"—were developed by the AMA Resident and Fellow Section.
CME activities are among education program webcasts
Learn about physician leadership, engaging members of the medical staff to improve quality and the future of the medical staff organization by viewing new webcasts from the AMA Organized Medical Staff Section. Physicians can claim continuing medical education (CME) credit for watching the webcasts. Titles include:
- "Doing the right thing for our patients: leading as a professional" (1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™)
- "Engaging members of the medical staff to measure and improve quality" (1.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™)
- "Future of the medical staff: strategies for re-engineering governance and operations to advance clinical and strategic imperatives" (1.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™)
AMA members can view these webcasts for free; nonmembers can watch them for $30 per credit hour. If you're not an AMA member, join today.